Indie Campers looking to match supply with demand

Campervan parked up

Online marketplace Indie Campers is hoping to bridge the gap between the current demand for leisure vehicles and supply in private hands.

Last summer it launched its peer-to-peer rental platform in Europe and the US, and is now set to bring it to the UK.

Dubbed the Airbnb for campervans, it’s designed to make it as easy as possible for those not using their leisure vehicles to rent them out for profit.

As staycations are more popular than ever but new and used motorhomes and caravans are in short supply to buy, this could represent a good opportunity for those wishing to embrace a touring holiday.

In the first six months of the platform launching in Europe, Indie Campers received in excess of 20,000 booking requests.

The company has been around for nine years, renting out its own fleet of 3,000 campervans, so this latest initiative extends its presence in the market.

Working in a similar way to Airbnb, Indie Campers’ marketplace allows owners to create an account and list their leisure vehicle in a straightforward process.

Owners then have full control over who they rent their beloved vehicle to, with all payments being processed from Indie Campers’ secure booking system.

The company believes owners could make up to £29,000 a year with the system, but income could be more modest for those who wish to enjoy the vehicle themselves between rentals.

This can be done easily, as owners are able to block out their own holiday times to prevent bookings interfering with their own plans.

Owners decide how much to charge in rental fees and can update these on the platform to reflect changes in the industry, such as demand.

Liability insurance, theft protection, comprehensive insurance and roadside assistance are automatically added to each booking, taking away the hassle for both parties.

Pierre Everling, vice president of marketplace at Indie Campers, said: “The demand for RV travel in the UK is booming. We have experienced an increase of searches of more than 60 per cent on our UK platform since last year.

“For the past few months, we have been working hard to make this demand available to private campervan owners in the market. We are thrilled to announce our partnership with Riverside [Insurance] and the official launch of our peer-to-peer marketplace in the UK.”

Requirements for owners to join the platform include an ID and primary insurance policy certificate, with this information enabling a contract to be created.

Indie Campers currently operates in 15 European countries, including Germany, Spain and Iceland, with depots in more than 50 cities to make picking up and returning a leisure vehicle as convenient as possible.

Riverside Insurance specialises in low-cost car hire excess insurance, which it has been providing to customers since 2007.